Categorized | Management

Managing risk as a project manager

The word “risk” in itself should tell you about any sort of potential threat to your project, organization or enterprise. And managing these risk factors by dealing with them in the proper and systematic manner is termed “risk management.” So naturally, a project manager needs to know what are the common forms of project risk, before he takes on a project. “Nothing ventured nothing gained” is definitely part and parcel of your job profile when you are working on a project. Nevertheless, you have to keep in mind that there is also a strong possibility of Murphy’s law of “what can go wrong is going to go wrong,” occurring during different stages of the execution of the project. So once a project manager has calculated the risks accompanying the project, he can take immediate steps and safeguards to prevent these situations from developing and bringing all his work to a standstill.

The management as well as the stakeholders need to know all about the accompanying risks while planning the project. These risks may prevent you from reaching your goals and objectives within a given timeframe. Some of these risks are related to the costs. Others are going to be related to available human resource and material resources required for successful completion of the different stages of your project. Apart from this, there may be unforeseen circumstances including natural and man-made disasters which are going to have an adverse effect on your project. They can also influence the easy accessibility of required human resources, as well as material resources.

The number of projects which have shut up midway in a country because of an escalating unsafe or possibly potentially dangerous political situation, union strikes, labor problems, unavailability of necessary raw materials, deadlines passed because of a paucity of funds, are examples of which nightmares are made. You would not want that to happen to you, would you? That is why you need to get to know all about these possible common forms of project risks. After that you need to take immediate steps to identify them, assess them, analyze and try to solve them, use preventive measures and to set up backup measures to safeguard against them.

Risk management is the proper analysis of the different risk factors which may be faced by a project manager. Some of these factors, apart from the financial, human resources, and material resources are also going to include clear and present physical danger to the workers, process and technological risk, – if you do not get the necessary state-of-the-art technology on-site in time –, time risks – going beyond your deadline – legal factors- like cases in which your company or project is involved- and intangible factors which may crop up during the project. A process risk includes using a number of unethical or potentially dangerous processes which can not only lead to legal risks, but also cause your project to fail.

It is only after the project manager has recognized these common forms of project risks that he can plan proper prevention and implementation systems and processes to prevent these factors from influencing the end and successful result of this project.

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